6,793 students to receive degrees
Due to COVID-19 crowd size restrictions, 6,793 UCSB undergraduate and graduate students will receive their degrees in a socially distant manner during the university’s Class of 2020 Virtual Celebration.
The online event will begin at 9 a.m. on June 13, the same day the graduating class would have walked across a stage before a crowdful of families if not for the pandemic.
According to a press release, UCSB will hold an in-person ceremony for the Class of 2020 at a later date once restrictions no longer prohibit large group gatherings.
As per usual during UCSB’s in-person graduation ceremonies, Chancellor Henry T. Yang will give remarks during the virtual commencement. Faculty speakers will include the deans of the College of Creative Studies, the College of Engineering, and the College of Letters and Science.
Courtney Chan, a graduate earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology, will be a student speaker.
Though the celebration may be online for the time being, the university has made an effort to ensure that the virtual ceremony has a feeling of excitement.
To achieve this, the virtual commencement will include activities like an online photo booth in which graduates can upload a photo of themselves to be superimposed on top of a picture of UCSB’s Henley Gate, a playlist curated by the class of 2020 consisting of songs that mark their time at UCSB, and a collection of congratulations messages written by UCSB alumni.
One of the most famous alumni appearing in the virtual ceremony is singer-songwriter, filmmaker, and environmentalist Jack Johnson, who will perform a song for the graduating class.
On Saturday, some graduates walked onto the UCSB campus and posed in their gowns for photos by friends and families. Backdrops included Henley Gate and other areas.